Well Brogan, today you would have been 9 years old. It was a milestone I was really hoping you would make. We fought hard, and I think you had a great life, even though it was cut shorter than we wanted.
You were an amazing dog and I miss you everyday. Today I shed a lot of tears thinking about you, but also smiled at some great memories of the goofy things you did.
You were one of a kind and the outpouring of love we got from friends and family was amazing and showed how much you touched everyone’s lives, not just ours. I hope you had a great day doing all the things you loved.
Wow, once again writing has taken a back burner, it feels like I’m constantly busy, but I can’t really tell you what I’m busy doing.
However, I wanted to take a moment and update all of you that have been following my blog for updates on Brogan. I am so happy to say that he turned 8 1/2 this month. I’m now celebrating the 1/2 years too, because he’s blown away everyone’s expectations for keeping on going. He was diagnosed with right sided heart failure when he was 5 and they thought I’d be lucky to have him for 6months. I am so happy that everyone was wrong. That being said we are seeing some big “old” dog signs now. He sleeps a lot, our walks are shorter and sometimes I think he forgets what he was doing (not that I can talk, I often do that too 🙄). All in all though he is doing so well. We changed his meds around again this fall because he was losing weight and collapsing a lot. Since that change we have gotten some weight back on and he had one big collapse in the last 3 months. That’s a huge success.
Sometimes it’s hard to believe that both of our dogs will be 9 this year. I’m so blessed to have them both. And I am grateful for every day that we have with them.
They have truly taught me to focus on the positive and appreciate every day.
I haven’t written for a while again… seems like I have the best intentions to keep my blog current and then the wheels fall off the bus, life gets busy and honestly a little bit of self doubt creeps in (after all what is so special about what I have to say). I am going to try to be more frequent with my posts again though. I still enjoy doing it.
Last time I wrote about Brogan trying out a fitbit to see if we could catch a dizzy episode or collapse with him, or even just a little insight into what happens when he gets excited. But we were lucky, or I should say are lucky, because the change in his heart meds has seemed to eliminate all his symptoms… hopefully for a long long time. I’m still not brave enough to let him cruise around off leash, but we do go for longer walks and we play in the backyard and he gets really goofy with Rosco and seems to feel good.
He hadn’t been doing a lot of that, even when he wasn’t feeling dizzy or having symptoms from his heart condition. We were noticing that he was sore and had a harder time getting in and out of the truck and definitely wasn’t cruising up and down the hallway and leaping in and out of the bed…then we tried hemp oil. Since then he is a big goof. Always wants to go further on our walks, but his heart still plays him out, just no more discomfort, so he thinks he should be able to go forever. It’s great to see my older guy feels so good that he is determined to go longer, and is always eager to go for a walk. It’s hard to see your furbaby age, but seeing him feel so good again makes me very happy.
He isn’t wearing his fitbit anymore because I think we have everything under control…for the moment anyway. And that is good enough for me…we will continue to do what we can to keep him happy and comfortable, and as healthy as we possibly can.
If you are interested in trying the remedy hemp with you furbaby, or yourself, or just want to learn more about it reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I saw a post a while ago of a Veterinarian using an apple watch to quickly check a dogs heartrate and figured I’d give it a try with my fitbit versa and Brogan. It worked amazing, but I wasn’t willing to give him my fitbit versa…however I did have an old charge HR that was just sitting in a drawer. I charged it and put it on him…and it works
Now I’m going to leave it on him and hope it does a decent job of monitoring what his heart is doing. We did a holter monitor on him a while ago, but didn’t really find out a whole lot from it, probably because that was only for 48hours, and I don’t think he was very comfortable wearing it. This doesn’t seem to affect him at all. And its mine, so it doesn’t cost me anything for him to wear it or check it.
So what brought this on you might wonder…
He has had more dizzy moments in the past month and I am a little concerned that his condition is getting worse. I managed to catch him before he collapsed 2 weeks ago and his heart was racing so fast I couldn’t count it. For those of you that are new to Brogan’s ongoing heart mystery the racing heart (tachycardia) was what got our initial diagnosis. He was put on a beta blocker to help control that. However it was very obvious that it was happening again. I talked to my Veterinarian the next day and we decided we would try increasing the dose of his beta blocker to see if that would help him out or not. He is now 1 full week into his increased dosage and seems to be doing okay. So now we will go back to more activities and see how he handles them.
I sure hope the fitbit works well enough that we can get a good baseline heartrate for him, and also see what happens when he is excited or when we are going for a walk.
Actually I kinda hope we don’t see any episodes and the fitbit doesn’t need to do anything.
In the meantime we will leave the fitbit on him and see what happens one way or another…
I’m sure all of you have experienced the aforementioned “fear of missing out” or FOMO at some point in your life. I can honestly say that I haven’t experienced it often, because normally if I want to do it, I do, and if I don’t, I don’t, and the decision is easy and I’m okay with it. However, this weekend I understand the term completely. I had surgery a few weeks ago to have my gallbladder removed and that has sidelined me from this weekends snowmobiling. I keep telling myself it’s short term pain for long term gain, because I know in my logical brain that if I push it I will end up further behind and end up missing out on more rides. However that didn’t make my heart feel better when I watched our group of friends all head out on their snowmobiles. I now have a bigger appreciation of FOMO and how that makes a person feel.
I am trying my hardest to stay focused on the positive and keep myself busy so that I’m not watching the clock wondering what everyone else is doing. I know I’m making the right decision, but that sure doesn’t make it easier.
I hope everyone gets a chance to sit back relax and reflect on the past year and really appreciate the good things that have happened to you and your family in 2018.
Unfortunately I think the spirit of Christmas is often lost in the chaos of trying to get everything perfect for Christmas (the perfect gifts, the perfect tree, the perfect decorations and the list goes on and on). This year I tried to take time to reflect and appreciate everything instead of just rushing through in a mad panic trying to get everything organized and shopping for the perfect gift. I’m not saying that I completely succeeded, I definitely had moments of panic when it was getting closer to the “deadline” of needing everything to be done, but I did do a better job of enjoying the process and taking me time. Sometimes a simple walk can do wonders to clear your head and reset everything.
We have been very blessed this year. I am pleased to say that Brogan is doing well, even when no one thought he would still be with us. Rosco is happy ad healthy and so are my hubby & I. We got to celebrate my in-laws 50th wedding anniversary with friends and family this summer. We were lucky enough to spend a lot of time at the cabin doing things we love again this year. And work is going well for both of us, which is great because our economy isn’t the best and I know people who are struggling because of that.
My young living business is also growing, it has been a slow process, but I feel good sharing the products with people and helping them try out some alternative options to healthy living. And on that note if any of you are interested in young living definitely reach out to me.
Anyway, I digress. I hope you all have an amazing Christmas!!
Well I can’t believe its been just over 1 year since I jumped in with both feet and braved putting myself out there with a blog. Originally I thought I would use it for young living and education about essential oils, but it quickly evolved into a blog about my dogs and cooking with just a touch of essential oils on the side.
I’d like to thank everyone who has taken the time to read and comment on my posts. It means a lot to me to know that someone is looking at what I wrote.
Its amazing how cathartic it can be to write things down about the dogs and how it feels good to memorialize the ones that we have loved and lost.
I also love cooking, always have, and I think the greatest compliment you can give someone is to ask for their recipe. I have always like sharing great recipes that I find and this is an easy place to do that.
I have been inconsistent with my posts recently, but I want to get back to at least weekly posts again. Maybe more if I’m feeling creative.
While I’m writing I figured I should update all of you on Brogan. He is doing well, he still collapses, and no one seems to be able to figure it out. So we just try to do stuff that keeps him somewhat calm and contained because big bursts of energy or excitement seem to cause him to collapse. Both dogs are resigned to on leash only walks and now that its not so hot out we can go for much longer ones. They both behave much better on a leash now than what they did when we first started with on leash walks so they are more enjoyable for all of us. And Rosco is Rosco, affectionate, loving and goofy, and healthy, healthy is pretty rare in the animals I love. So I have to mention that.
Feels like I blinked and summer was over, I don’t know how it managed to slip by so quickly. It doesn’t feel like I accomplished much, but I did get to enjoy it. It just feels like it went by too quickly.
We got to spend a lot of time at the cabin, which is our happy place. So although summer went by too quickly I do have to say that we did get to embrace and appreciate every moment of it.
Today, September 27th, is an emotional day for me. Its my mom’s and one of my good friends birthdays, but its also on this day that we lost Sloan, and that Brogan got diagnosed with right sided heart failure. This year today is a day for celebration. I’m celebrating that I have such a loving family and circle of friends. I’m celebrating all the love that Sloan brought to us in the short amount of time we got him, and I’m really celebrating that Brogan is still with us and is doing fairly well. Not saying our life hasn’t changed, but he didn’t have a great prognosis and its 2 years post diagnosis and he’s still feeling good, being a goof, and today he even managed to catch 3 Frisbees in a row…he then missed the next 5. But he has never caught one yet, so thats pretty amazing. Unfortunately I’m away on the road this week, so I didn’t get to see it, but my husband made sure he shared it with me. It makes me so happy that he still feels good enough to do those things. He loves frisbee, he loves going for walks, he loves travelling with us and he loves being a pest to his older, smaller brother. So I am very grateful that he still is with us and enjoying all of that.
Last time I wrote about Brogan I wasn’t sure what he would want and what we should do with him…should we let him off leash, should we let him have dog friends, or should we play it safe and keep him on leash and healthy for as long as we can. Well today confirmed my decision to keep him on leash. We went for an on leash walk this morning. It had rained so it was muggy, but not crazy hot. He loves playing in mud puddles and really any water, so I let him splash around in the ditches while we were walking. He ended up in one spot that was deep and he sorta had to take 3 swimming strokes to get across. He came out of that hole and was so happy, but was starting to look a little tired so I figured we would come straight back to the cabin and into the air conditioning. We weren’t far from the cabin when he slowed right down, I looked to see what he was doing, I could tell that he was dizzy and he sat down when I was getting close to him. I put my arms around him and held him and talked to him and while I was doing that he slumped down onto his chest. I kept talking to him and we sat like that for a bit, he didn’t lose consciousness, but definitely was having some issue. When he was okay we got up and walked the rest of the way to the cabin.
He basically confirmed with that episode that I can’t let him run around off leash. His heart, or whatever is causing issues, is just not good enough for it. He is happy with our on leash walks, always wants to go, plays like a goof with Rosco (his dog brother) and basically seems very content and happy to be doing what we are doing. So we will enjoy every minute of every day we have together, we just won’t be running around in any off leash areas. I’m okay with that. And I guess he will have to be as well.
We have been a long roller coaster ride with Brogan and his heart. As many of you might remember we were basically told that we had 4 or 5 months with him when he was initially diagnosed…and we have definitely surpassed that…and I’m hoping we continue to do so for many more years. That being said the big guy still has the odd collapse/faint, even though we have followed everything that we are supposed to with him. And I’m the kind of person that wants all the answers. Last time I wrote about him we were at the point of thinking it was 2 separate conditions, but we were waiting for the cardiologist to get back to us to see what she thought about that theory. I finally got to speak with her. She said it’s really hard to confirm that, because there are a few other heart related issues that could be causing his collapses. She said she would like to do 2 more tests on him and is supposed to get back to me with the cost associated with them. I’m at the point now that I have to decide if I need to keep testing to try to get an answer, or if I just continue enjoying him and doing what we are doing and just let him live his life. Really the only reason I would like to have a definite answer is so that he could have dog friends again and be allowed to be off leash again. But at this point I’m not 100% sure that is worth it. He is doing well, he doesn’t seem to miss his dog friends as much (he does have a dog brother that fulfills the dog “friend” part) and he doesn’t seem to mind on leash walks, although I’m sure he would love some off leash time. It would be so much easier if he could talk. For so may reasons, but mostly so he could tell us what symptoms he feels and is having before he collapses. And also what he would like us to do. What would he choose if it were up to him. That is the really hard part with animals, we have to guess at what they are feeling…in every way.